Scroll Top



What you need to know about Concussion

A concussion is a brief brain injury brought on by a head hit, blow, or jolt. In most cases, it typically lasts a few days or weeks. Although it occasionally requires emergency care and certain people may experience longer-lasting issues (see the section on when to call 999).

Concussions are the most typical and mildest form of traumatic brain injury. The Latin verb concutere, which means “to shake violently,” is where the phrase originates. The most frequent cause of a concussion is a sudden, direct blow or jolt to the head.

According to NICE, 1.4 million patients in England and Wales visit emergency rooms each year after suffering a recent head injury. Children under the age of 15 make up between 33% and 50% of this group. Every year, over 200,000 patients with brain injuries are admitted to hospitals for head injuries sustained during recreational and sporting activities. Other reasons include fighting, falls, work-related injuries, vehicle and bicycle accidents, and mishaps at work.

Your brain moves inside your skull as a result of the hit or abrupt jolt. Additionally, interfering with your brain’s electrical signals also causes the release of substances that alter how your brain normally functions. It is believed that in some concussed individuals, the tiniest blood vessels in the brain may also have suffered microscopic damage.

Falling (particularly from a height), car accidents, and injuries sustained while participating in sports including football, rugby, American football, skiing, boxing, and cycling are the most frequent causes of concussions.

Minor head injury, minor brain injury, and minor traumatic brain injury are additional names for concussion.

Symptoms of Concussion

If you’ve had a head injury and have any of the symptoms listed below, you might have a concussion:

  • Confusion or feeling dazed
  • Clumsiness
  • Slurred speech
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Headache
  • Balance problems or dizziness
  • Blurred vision
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Sensitivity to noise
  • Sluggishness
  • Ringing in ears
  • Irritability or other behaviour or personality changes
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Loss of memory
  • Fatigue or sleepiness
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Forgetfulness such as repeating yourself
  • Slowed response to questions
  • Problems with sleep
  • Depression
  • Problems with taste or smell
  • Cognitive impairment – the inability to think clearly, which results in lengthy decision-making processes or poor concentration.
  • Feeling emotional.
  • You passed out; only one out of ten concussed people experiences this.
  • If your unconsciousness lasted more than 15 minutes, you might have suffered a more severe brain injury.

Some concussion symptoms take time to manifest, such as:

  • Sleep disturbances include being too tired or having trouble falling asleep.
  • Feeling tired.
  • being cranky and irritable.


When given the right care, the majority of concussion victims make a full recovery. But because a concussion can be catastrophic, it’s crucial to protect oneself. The following are some actions to take:

  • Look for medical help. The severity of the concussion and whether you need treatment can be determined by a medical practitioner.

They will ask you about the symptoms and inquire as to how the head injury occurred. Simple inquiries like “Where do you live?” “What is your name?” or “Who is the president?” may also be asked by the doctor. These inquiries are made by the doctor to assess your memory and focus.

The central nervous system is responsible for reflexes and coordination, both of which the doctor may examine. To rule out bleeding or other severe brain injuries, the doctor might also prescribe a CT scan or an MRI.


Soft tissues make up the brain. It is padded by spinal fluid and covered by the skull’s protective layer. The impact of a hit or bump to the head can startle the brain. It can occasionally make it physically move inside of your mind. Bruising, blood vessel damage and nerve damage are all possible side effects of traumatic brain injuries.

Your brain doesn’t work as it should as a result. A concussion may cause vision problems, balance issues, or even cause you to lose consciousness. Simply put, the brain is perplexed.

You’re more likely to sustain a concussion if:

  • Falls, especially in younger people and the elderly
  • Engaging in contact sports
  • Inadequate supervision or safety equipment for contact sports
  • Accidents involving cars, motorcycles, bicycles, and other vehicles that cause head injuries
  • Being struck, hit with something, or subjected to additional physical violence
  • A military career
  • A prior head injury


Numerous short- or long-term consequences, including those that impact thinking, sensation, language, or emotions, can result from a concussion. These alterations may result in memory loss, communication difficulties, personality changes, depression, and the early start of dementia.

When to call a doctor

If you’ve hurt your head and have any of the following, go to the hospital immediately:

  • After being knocked out, waking up.
  • You have memory issues.
  • A headache that doesn’t go away.
  • Been vomiting after the injury, with an adult experiencing more than one episode or a youngster experiencing three or more episodes.changes in your behaviour, such as becoming more irritable.
  • Previously undergone brain surgery or are using blood thinners (like warfarin).
  • Have you consumed alcohol or used illicit substances?

In these situations, you ought to be examined by a medical expert skilled in evaluating head injuries. To rule out a severe brain injury, they will determine whether you require a brain scan.


In the event of an emergency, for an ambulance, dial 999 in the event that someone has suffered a head injury and has:

  • Not woken up after being knocked unconscious
  • Difficulty staying awake
  • Difficulties with comprehension, speech, writing, walking, or balance
  • Weakness or numbness in a bodily part
  • Difficulties with their vision
  • Clear discharge from their nose or ears
  • Bruising behind one or both ears, or bleeding from their ears
  • A black eye that doesn’t appear to have any eye injury
  • A fit or seizure
  • Knocked their head in a catastrophic incident, such as a vehicle collision

If someone needs to travel to the hospital but you can’t get them there safely, you should also call for an ambulance.

Treatment & Home Remedies

The doctor will provide you with recommendations to follow if hospitalisation is not necessary. If symptoms worsen, experts advise seeking follow-up medical care within 24 to 72 hours. To heal at home, you ought to:

  • Rest – If you had a concussion while participating in an athletic activity, stop playing and take a break. Rest is essential because your brain needs time to recuperate properly. Play should not be resumed that day. When play resumes, coaches should keep a watchful eye on both athletes and kids. An increased possibility of suffering a second concussion, which can worsen the damage, exists if you return to play too soon.
  • Prevent recurrent concussions – The brain is affected cumulatively by repeated concussions. Consequences of repeated concussions can be severe and include death, chronic brain damage, long-term disability, and brain swelling. If your symptoms persist, avoid returning to your regular activities. Obtain a doctor’s okay so you can play or go back to work with confidence.
  • Use painkillers without aspirin to treat your pain – Your doctor will either recommend an over-the-counter painkiller or write a prescription for it.


Being unexpected, concussions are challenging to avoid. However, there are a number of sensible safety measures you may take to reduce the risk of traumatic brain damage.

  • Wear safety equipment when necessary – Football, hockey, boxing, and rugby are examples of high-contact, high-risk sports where playing can raise the chance of concussions. The health of your brain is also in danger from rollerblading, skateboarding, snowboarding, and horseback riding. Protecting against severe head injuries can be accomplished by wearing protective gear, cushioning, and mouth- and eye guards. Bicycle helmet use can reduce the risk of traumatic head injury by 85%. A new C-shaped collar-like item called the Q-Collar is also available for use by athletes. In order to lessen brain movement that might be caused by head impacts, it compresses the neck and raises blood volume. Ensure that any equipment you use is maintained properly and fits you properly.
  • Ride and drive safely – Always buckle up, drive under the posted speed limit, and abstain from drugs and alcohol as they might slow your reflexes.
  • Don’t fight – Men are more likely to report serious head injuries than women, and concussions are frequently sustained during an assault.
  • Home hazards should be reduced – Make sure your home is well-lit and declutter the floors and corridors.
  • Regular exercise – You might develop stronger leg muscles and greater balance as a result, which could prevent falls.
  • Protect your children by taking safety precautions at home. Put up stairway gates and window guards.